Symmons Plains: Friday practice report

Ambrose breaks lap record at Tasmania Triple Challenge Current V8 Supercar Championship leader Marcos Ambrose confirmed his position as home town favourite with a blistering display of speed that smashed the lap record in the opening practice...

Ambrose breaks lap record at Tasmania Triple Challenge

Current V8 Supercar Championship leader Marcos Ambrose confirmed his position as home town favourite with a blistering display of speed that smashed the lap record in the opening practice session for the Tasmania Triple Challenge at Symmons Plains Raceway this weekend.

The Pirtek Falcon driver set a new lap record of 52.8467secs in a practice session that saw the top 26 cars separated by just one second. Holden Racing Team's Todd Kelly was second fastest with teammate Mark Skaife in third.

As the V8 Supercars returned to Tasmania for the first time in five years, all eyes were on local hero and reigning V8 Supercar Champion Ambrose as he led the toppling of times that saw almost the entire field go under the lap record.

"We expected to do a good time and 52.8 seconds is a time," Ambrose said.

"As the rubber goes down, we'll get quicker and quicker and by the time qualifying comes around the surface will be really good."

The short Symmons Plains circuit will mean car setup and qualifying will be critical ahead of tomorrow's first race and Holden Racing Team driver Mark Skaife believes it will be one of the toughest and closest qualifying sessions the category has ever seen.

"You've got to do a great job under braking for one lap and you've got to get every little bit out of it," Skaife said

"I think we may see the tightest qualifying session of the season, we could have at least 20 cars within a second of each other."

Castrol Perkins driver Steve Richards believes the competition will be even closer and the race winner will be decided by car setup and the ability to cope with the surface changes on the track.

"I think for the first time in V8 Supercars we could see the entire field within a second of each other," Richards said.

"The race will most likely come down to setup and how the car copes with the surface changes on the track."

Tomorrow's schedule will see the V8 Supercars complete practice two before the all important qualifying and top ten shootout and the first race which will commence at 4.00pm.

-avesco-

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About this article
Series Supercars
Drivers Marcos Ambrose , Mark Skaife , Todd Kelly , Steve Richards
Teams Holden Racing Team